Beautiful Resistance: “As the Israelis are destroying our lives, we are transforming them through the power of art, music, drama and dance.” Civil society is stepping up non-violent actions against the occupation. ICAHD keeps the torch of political resistance alive by building houses and Jeff Halper, founder and director, called on us to become more than peace activists. We must find ways of inserting ourselves into the political process and become a force in ending the occupation. Professor Ilan Pappe spoke about challenging the basic ideology on which Israel is based and reframing the relationship between settlers and Palestinians on the basis of reconciling what has been done to the native population, something akin to Truth and Reconciliation.
Jeff Halper and Ilan Pappe agreed that we must look beyond the so-called peace talks which are going nowhere and civil society must come up with an idea of what it wants and we must strive continuously to de-legitimize Israel and stoke up the BDS Campaign.
John McCarthy was interviewed by Linda Ramsden, ICAHD’s UK director. He spoke of returning to Palestine to make sense of his years in captivity. The IDF now break into houses at night, terrorize the inhabitants and then depart saying “We won’t demolish your home this time but we’ll be back.” John reflected on how he and his family would feel under this constant threat of dispossession. Governments do no lead, they follow. We must Keep Hope Alive by stepping up our commitment to actions which demand our government’s attention and which cause reputational damage to companies which continue to trade from settlements in the West Bank.
The day promoted a daunting but inspiring agenda and reaffirmed a sense of urgency to take up the challenge to write more letters and not to leave direct action on behalf of the BDS Campaign to supporters living in Birmingham and Manchester where it is easier because more people can be rallied to give it a go.